By: Kelsey Schauf

Growing up in the Heartland, Joshua Ryan Owen (Jake Owen) didn’t always know that he wanted to be a country music sensation. Jake and his twin brother Jarod were born in Winter Haven, Florida to Steve and Mitzi Owen on August 28, 1981. The Owens family left Winter Haven when the boys were five years old and made the move to Vero Beach, Florida.

At the age of 15, Jake knew he wanted to pursue a golf career after taking home a trophy at the Indian River County Junior Invitational at Indian River Club in Vero Beach. The Owen brothers attended Vero Beach High School and then went on to Florida State University. Jarod went to FSU on a full tennis scholarship, and Jake was a Political Science major and also planned to walk-on to the FSU golf team.

His dream of going pro in golf was quickly halted after Jake suffered a wakeboarding accident in Vero Beach at the age of 19. The serious incident required him to have reconstructive surgery on his left shoulder. The injury would put a hold on his golf career, but he was unsure for how long. After a year of not swinging a golf club at one hundred percent, Jake found himself in a place of frustration and anxiousness.

Prior to this career-changing injury, Jake didn’t see himself as a musician. During that downtime from golf, he found a guitar in his roommate’s closet. He taught himself how to play, which helped with the sadness he was feeling post-injury. After six to eight months, Jake began playing at local venues in both Tallahassee and Vero Beach. The Florida native frequented local hot spots such as Parrots and Potbellies (Tallahassee) and The Riverside Café in Vero. There was a light at the end of this tunnel, and it was a future career in music.

“I couldn’t dream of all the success I’ve achieved today. It’s taken a lot of hard work and many years to get where I am, and I wouldn’t have it any other way,” Owen said. “All of my obstacles, including the injury, led to where I am today.”

With the blessing from his parents, Jake packed up his belongings and moved to Nashville, Tennessee. Not long after he landed in Nashville, Jake signed a contract with Music Row, and less than a year later in 2006 he inked a deal with RCA Records. Later that year, he released his debut studio album, Startin’ with Me. Jake’s first album peaked at eighth on the US Country music charts. The Florida native wrote all of the songs on his debut album.

“I put aside a lot of my own songs that I had written and started recording some outside songs that I thought were better,” Owen told CMT in 2011. “That’s kind of risky when it comes to your own. Most people think in order to validate yourself as an artist, you have to write your own songs. I commend the guys that do. I’ve done it. But I also think that you can pick great songs outside that you didn’t write that can help your career.”

Of his seven studio albums, he has nine singles that reached number one on the US country charts: “Barefoot Blue Jean Night,” “Alone with You,” “The One That Got Away,” and “Anywhere with You,” from his third album, Barefoot Blue Jean Night; “Beachin” from his fourth album, Days of Gold; “American Country Love Song” from his fifth studio album, American Love, and “I Was Jack (You Were Diane)” and “Homemade” from his sixth studio album, Greetings From…Jake.

In 2010, the Jake Owen Foundation was established as a registered 501(c)(3) private nonprofit foundation. Jake initially created this foundation to offer financial support on a national level to children battling cancer and other catastrophic childhood diseases through St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. In addition, the foundation also aids various youth organizations and charities in Jake’s hometown of Vero Beach, Florida and surrounding Indian River County.

“The Jake Owen Foundation is one of the most fulfilling things I have ever been involved with. What matters is the kind of person you are. Your character … Your legacy. What have YOU done for others? Music in my life has been great to me but the one thing I will always be most proud of and look back on … and be able to share with my daughters … are things that compliment your character. Giving back has always been important to me in everything I do,” Owen states on the Jake Owen Foundation website.

These days, the Jake Owen Foundation has been able to expand their mission of helping people in places they call home, all while supporting the beneficiaries who have been a part of the Foundation since it began 13 years ago. Funds are raised through private donations, brand partnerships, and special events assisting child and youth programs, education, healthcare, and more. To date, the Jake Owen Foundation has raised more than $3 million dollars for nonprofit organizations.

The Foundation raises money through events such as the annual Jake Owen Benefit Concert, Songwriters Showcase and the Jake Owen Flamingo Golf Classic, which is held annually in Vero Beach. In 2018, Jake was honored with the Jake Owen Field by the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation and the Kevin Harvick Foundation. The field is a state-of-the-art synthetic turf youth baseball field at a sports complex in his hometown.

Family is a priority for the 41-year-old musician. Owen married model Lacey Buchanan on May 7, 2012, in Vero Beach. Their first daughter, Olive Pearl (Pearl) was born on November 22, 2012, Thanksgiving Day. The couple later divorced in August 2015 after three years of marriage. In 2017, Owen met Erica Hartlein, and the rest is history. The two welcomed a daughter, Paris Hartley, on April 29, 2019, and got engaged in December 2020.

“I always try to make family time my number one priority. That being said, I love having my girls at shows with me,” exclaimed Owen. “Looking offstage and seeing them singing along is the best feeling as a dad, and it makes me cherish both my time at home and on the road with them.”

Just over four years since his last album was released, Owen released his seventh studio album titled Loose Cannon on June 23, 2023. This 16-track album features some of Nashville’s most talented writers including Ashley Gorley, Brent Cobb, Rodney Clawson, Jessie Jo Dillon, Luke Laird and many others.

“I can’t wait to share this new wave of music with my fans,” Owen stated when speaking about the album. “This album is a long time coming and feels like the best version of me. Grab your buddies, put the boat in the water, pour a cold one out and we’ll catch y’all out on the lake. It’s the best time of year and we’re ready to celebrate.”

This Florida native country music sensation is proud of his latest album of summertime country lyrics and is going on tour! You can see Jake in his upcoming headline Loose Cannon tour starting off in Cleveland, Ohio on September 7. You can visit www. to see where you can find Jake showcasing his musical talents.